LONDON — Old Flo may be coming home.
A London borough mayor said last week he would reverse a decision to sell a Henry Moore sculpture at the center of a heated legal dispute, and re-erect the 8-foot bronze figure in the city’s East End.
Tower Hamlets Mayor John Biggs said the sculpture “belongs to the people of east London and should be available locally for public enjoyment.”
His statement followed a High Court judge’s ruling that the Tower Hamlets borough owns Moore’s “Draped Seated Woman,” nicknamed Old Flo. It stood for years outside a public housing project in the east London borough, one of Britain’s poorest areas.
After the cash-strapped local council announced plans to sell Old Flo in 2012, another London borough claimed it was the rightful owner and took the case to court.
In the meantime, Biggs’ predecessor, Lutfur Rahman, was removed from office in April after being convicted of electoral fraud. Rahman had argued the sale was needed to offset spending cuts from the British government.
Moore, one of Britain’s best-known 20th-century artists, created “Draped Steated Woman” in 1957, partly inspired by images of Londoners sheltering from the Blitz.
Artists, Moore’s daughter and London Mayor Boris Johnson all opposed the plan to sell the sculpture, whose value has been estimated at between $7.7 million and $31 million.